Council doesn’t need another Torre, vote for Hauenstein

We closely follow Aspen politics, frequently from polar opposite perspectives. We often disagree, sometimes with an edge. But on the subject of the most qualified person to fill the remaining council position in the coming runoff we are in complete agreement: Ward Hauenstein is far the better of the two candidates. We heartily endorse him.

While some portray them as holding essentially the same positions, Torre and Ward Hauenstein are fundamentally different. Ward is a pragmatic, careful thinker who examines all facets of the issue before reaching a conclusion. He is a 40-year resident and a successful businessman in tune with the complexities of a high-tech society while fully embracing those fundamentals that make Aspen unique.

Torre’s voting record is out of step. He makes no attempt to defend it. His votes in 2010 resulted in approving the Aspen Art Museum and the neighboring Muse Building. He also has a large number of previous votes in favor of big development in the central core. Aspen does not need more of that from City Council.

We need a councilmember like Ward Hauenstein, who understands that council must balance competing needs — maintaining small-town values, on one hand, with sound financial management to achieve those goals, on the other. Our small town has a budget of over $100 million. There is no place at the council table for someone who has a record of voting from his gut, has no record of carefully analyzing issues, and who has not articulated clear policy positions. In contrast to his opponent, Ward has the capacity to take on that challenge. He deserves your vote for the remaining seat in this runoff election.

Maurice Emmer and Neil B. Siegel